Video Game Review: Fighting Excellence of ‘Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds’

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CHICAGO – “Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds” plays like a comic and video game geek’s fan fiction come true. What would happen if your favorite comic characters like Spider-Man, Iron Man, and Wolverine not only fought each other but went at it against your most-beloved video game icons like Chris Redfield (“Resident Evil”), Nathan Spencer (“Bionic Commando”), and Chun-Li (“Street Fighter”)? Once again, Capcom continues to lead the way in fighting games with what will surely be one of the best entries in its genre this year. Video Game Rating: 4.0/5.0
Video Game Rating: 4.0/5.0

With an amazing graphics engine that allows for a game that looks like a living comic book, “Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds” is one of the most visually-engaging fighting games yet produced. It’s not cluttered with too much background or character detail — just the right amount to dazzle without distracting. The game is visually interesting enough that each setting and character can offer something new the first dozen times you play them. Most fighting games, especially the trend of 3D ones, place too much emphasis on environment over gameplay. “MvC 3” keeps it simple and yet looks amazing at the same time.

Marvel vs. Capcom 3
Marvel vs. Capcom 3
Photo credit: Capcom

Of course, it’s all about the fighting. Using either the control stick or directional pad (which I would recommend), the player controls a series of combos and special moves, all of which feel specific to the characters, especially the hyper combos. There are fewer playable characters than some games of this type but they feel deeper, as if each has been lovingly created instead of just replicated from another one with the skin changed. When you choose Wolverine over Ryu over X-23, you’re getting different skill sets. And considering most of the game is designed for a 3-on-3 battle, choosing the right 3 actually involves more strategy than the average title.

Marvel vs. Capcom 3
Marvel vs. Capcom 3
Photo credit: Capcom

As for moves, the developers found an excellent balance here, not weighing the title down with too many combos that only the most expert player could possibly learn but not turning the “Normal” mode into something unsatisfactory. There is a “Simple” mode that allows even the youngest players to unleash fury on each other without much button-pressing. The normal mode has a nice balance. It took me some time and some training to get back into the Capcom fighting groove but it didn’t take long enough to be frustrating.

Who’s coming to the party?

From Marvel: Captain America, Deadpool, Doctor Doom, Dormammu, Hulk, Iron Man, Magneto, M.O.D.O.K., Phoenix, Sentinel, She-Hulk, Spider-Man, Storm, Super-Skrull, Taskmaster, Thor, Wolverine, and X-23.

From Capcom: Akuma, Albert Wesker, Amaterasu, Arthur, Chris Redfield, Chun-Li, Crimson Viper, Dante, Felicia, Hsien-Ko, Mike Haggar, Morrigan Aensland, Nathan Spencer, Ryu, Trish, Tron Bonne, Viewtiful Joe, and Zero.

What a great list, right? It’s not just the expected “greatest hits” like Captain America and Ryu. Those are obvious choices. M.O.D.O.K.? Not so obvious. Amaterasu (from “Okami”)? Definitely unexpected. Just the character choices for “Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds” should put a smile on most fan boy’s faces.

The only flaw in the game is in its depth. There’s no story mode or anything beyond the basic fighting either through arcade or versus on your own or, where the game truly shines, online against other opponents. There’s a mission mode that’s pretty repetitive and closer to training than anything else. It’s a game built for a bit of arcade play on your own to get your skills back up and then online play to see if you’re as good as you think you are.

And that’s where it shines — train yourself to get back up to speed, pick your favorite characters, and head online to test your skills. With gorgeous graphics, smooth gameplay, and inspired character choices, combos, and animations, “Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds” delivers.

“Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds” was released by Capcom on February 15th, 2011 for the PS3 and Xbox 360. The version reviewed was for the Xbox 360. It is rated T (Teen). content director Brian Tallerico

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